Some children have an ADHD diagnosis and then move on to get an autism (ASD) diagnosis, or vice versa. Some have both – co-morbidity or twice exceptional. The diagnoses share many symptoms. So what’s the difference?
You could just be cynical and say that it depends whether you see an ADHD specialist or an ASD specialist. But I think it is more than that.
Troubled children, and troubled adults for that matter, tend to implode or explode. If they implode, they exhibit the behaviour that is interpreted as ASD and/or depression, if they explode they exhibit the behaviour interpreted as ADHD. If they do both, it could be ASD with the occasional meltdown, or multiple diagnoses.
How much better it could be to just call them troubled and look at what is troubling them.